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Waist measurements

mrchapel

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I have a question that may seem a bit weird. Yesterday I was shopping at Nordstrom with my girlfriend. Some pretty good items on sale. A saleswoman (thought it was weird that there were all Men sales staff at the Women's side, and all Women at the Men's side, except for the shoe area) caught me checking out some of the various suits on display.

She asked if I'd like to be measured. I said, sure, why not. She proceeded to take the measurements and took my measurement at the waist to be 37". Now I wear nothing but 34" in the waist, as anything larger will fall off. My question is; how is it that I wear a waist measurement of 34" but the overall waist 37"? How do they measure this when making pants? I was thinking about purchasing some MTM pants, and now I'm wondering which measurement to use. Anyone have any suggestions?
 

gdl203

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I'm confused. Is this a discussion of proportions of waist vs inseam?
 

mrchapel

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Gah I'm mixed up. Not the inseam. Basically, they measured me in the waist at 37 inches. I wear 34 inches, with a little room to spare. My question is...how are they different? Is it normal to subtract 3 inches to come up with the waist size when making clothes? Or did she just measure wrong?
 

Get Smart

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Perhaps she measured lower towards the hips where you will be larger in width..?
 

NoVaguy

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some clothes are cut looser because people don't want to admit that they've put on weight and need a larger waist.

sort of like jerry seinfeld changing the numbers on his jeans.
 

mrchapel

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Hmmm ok, I just dug out the tape measure and am measuring myself. I too am coming up with 37". This is strange; if I wear a 37" waist, it's going to be like wearing a boat. There must be some method, because 37" isn't a standard waist measurement for OTR pants. 32, 34, 36, 38...curious. If I was fatter, I'd notice, but right now I am wearing a pair of trousers from Express that I picked up last week for around $20. Waist size is 34 and its perfect; don't need a belt or anything.
 

mrchapel

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Originally Posted by Dapper Dandy
Are you sure you're measuring where you wear your pants?

Yes, I was measuring right above where my pants sit at the waist. Is this incorrect? It's the same place the saleswoman measured last night.
 

Get Smart

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Measure your pants too. Maybe your size 34 is actually a couple inches larger.
 

whoopee

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Some makers "vanity size" their clothes. Other times, when meant to be worn lower, the waistbands will measure greater than the indicated size for obvious reasons.
 

Vintage Gent

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Didn't Bill Murray's character have the same problem in Stripes when he was being outfitted for his uniform? "Thirty-seven? These are thirty-fours, and they're loose."
 

Despos

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You are a 34 waist and a 37. Everone has 2 waist measurements.
37 is your jacket waist. This is above your belt at the love handles. This measure is used to determine the jacket girth at the waist of the jacket, but is too large for your trouser waist. 34 is your trouser waist which would be under your belt. This is always smaller than the jacket waist unless you have abs like on the infomercials and 0 body fat.
If you are wearing unconstructed waistbands, like jeans, you may be able to wear one size smaller than your trouser waist, Jeans sizing and tailored trousers will not be the same.
I presume this sales person is not expierienced enough or properly trained to measure for MTM. It is always best to be measured by an expierienced tailor.
 

mrchapel

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Originally Posted by Despos
You are a 34 waist and a 37. Everone has 2 waist measurements.
37 is your jacket waist. This is above your belt at the love handles. This measure is used to determine the jacket girth at the waist of the jacket, but is too large for your trouser waist. 34 is your trouser waist which would be under your belt. This is always smaller than the jacket waist unless you have abs like on the infomercials and 0 body fat.
If you are wearing unconstructed waistbands, like jeans, you may be able to wear one size smaller than your trouser waist, Jeans sizing and tailored trousers will not be the same.
I presume this sales person is not expierienced enough or properly trained to measure for MTM. It is always best to be measured by an expierienced tailor.


THANK YOU for your very informative response. This I suspect is the case. So, as a general rule of thumb (if one exists), how close are jeans and trouser waist sizes?
 

Despos

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Jean makers differ. Some cut a jean 1" larger than the size on the label to allow for shrinking/stretching. It is at the discretion of the maker. No consistant standard
 

mrchapel

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Originally Posted by Despos
Jean makers differ. Some cut a jean 1" larger than the size on the label to allow for shrinking/stretching. It is at the discretion of the maker. No consistant standard

Great, that makes sense. Thanks, Despos.
 

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